Huawei Honor 6 Plus Review: A true flagship at an amazing price!
Huawei Honor 6 Plus was one of the most talked about smartphones this month. In the past few weeks, we save seen plenty of rumors regarding the design and specifications of the device, which gave us a fair idea as to what to expect from the Huawei flagship. But today, we don’t have to rely on any rumors or leaks, as Huawei has officially unveiled the Huawe Honor 6 Plus smartphone.
Like always, we start off with the Huawei Honor 6 Plus Review with design.
If you have seen the Honor 6 smartphone, you’d immediately realize that the new Honor 6 Plus is related to the device in some way. This is because, the new flagship retains the basic design as its predecessor. You get the same rectangular design with round corners as the earlier flagship. However, with its larger 5.5-inch display as opposed to the 5-inch display found on the Honor 6, the new device is much larger and wider than the latter. But somehow, Huawei has managed to maintain the exact same thickness on both the models.
Huawei Honor 6 Plus Dimensions: 150.46×75.68×7.5mm Weight: 165 grams
Huawei Honor 6 Dimensions : 139.6 x 69.7 x 7.5 mm Weight: 130 grams
As you can see, the Honor 6 Plus and Honor 6 measure just 7.5mm in thickness.
The company has taken special care of the design on the phone. The display occupies over 78.2% of the front and the bezels are much thinner than the earlier model. This makes it look much more solid and premium than its predecessor. Even the portion above and below the display looks much smaller.
On top of the display, lies the ear piece, sensors and the front camera. However Huawei has changed the placement to a certain extent of these components. The front camera is now to the left of the ear piece while the sensors go just above it. With the bigger real estate, you have four on screen buttons (an additional notification drop down button is available), instead of the three found on the original model.
The rear panel remains the same on the new device. So, you have a glass like finish at the back which gives it a rich look. If you look closely, you’ll see the small grid on the back cover like the previous flagship. But these lines are not visible from a distance. This finish gives it a very unique feel, much different than other phones available in the market.
The camera and the dual LED flash placement remains the same i.e. on top of the rear panel. However, now you can clearly see the dual camera setup with two sensors onboard. In the middle, you have the honor branding and finally at the bottom, you have the speaker grill. You’ll also see a shiny metal frame which adds a rich flavor the overall unibody design.
On the right side, you have the power and the volume buttons. Below these lies the openings for SIM card as well as MicroSD card + Nano SIM card slot. On the previous model, Huawei had these under a single flap, but now they are separated. On top you have the 3.5m headphone jack as well as the IR blaster while at the bottom, you have the traditional MicroUSB slot along with a microphone besides it.
Overall, we are happy with the design on the new Huawei flagship. The company has smartly used the successful design from the previous flagship and made it even better on this new phone. So, it looks solid, durable as well as premium, making it one of the best looking phones of the year.
The Huawei Honor 6 Plus comes with a 5.5-inch 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution display. While we would have loved to see a 2K display on the phone like most other flagships in the market, the 1080p display too looks pretty clear and vibrant. In fact, when you look at the pixel density of the device, its about 401ppi, which is great for a phone with this size.
The LCD screen looks rich in colors and vibrant and there is no noticeable pixels on the screen. So, videos and pictures looks great on its large screen. In short, you shouldn’t have any problems with the Honor 6 Plus’s 1080p display.
One thing we would like to add is that 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution is quite sharp. But of late, we have become obsessed with 2K resolution, hence some may feel that the lack of a 2K display is a drawback. But we don’t feel so, because end of the day the display looks very good and the lower resolution screen will help increase the phone’s battery life.
HARDWARE & PERFORMANCE:
Huawei has made sure that its flagship has top-notch specifications. Under the hood, you have the Huawei’s own HiSilicon Kirin 925 octa-core processor. This processor is built on the ARM’s big.LITTLE architecture and comes with four ARM Cortex-A7 cores clocked at 1.31 GHz and Cortex-A15 at 1.80 GHz. When the phone is running just the basic apps, the four A7 cores are working under the hood. However, as you start a graphic intensive game or an app, the remaining four A15 cores sets in. Such a setup will help the phone regulate the heat generated inside and will conserve battery as much as possible. The inbuilt Mali-T628MP4 GPu is equipped with a ‘i3′ coprocessor which can support 4G LTE Category 6 networks. The processor is mated with 3GB RAM to provide a smooth multitasking experience. For storage you have 16GB/ 32GB internal storage options along with a MicroSD card slot which can take cards up to 128GB in size.
Overall performance of the Kirin 925 is quite good. When using the phone for basic tasks like music, calls and internet surfing, the phone won’t get heated up easily. However, when you are playing a heavy game or working on a graphic intensive app, the phone does heat a little.
Gaming performance is good. The phone handled racing games as well as first person running games like Subway Surfer without any glitches. Kirin 925 and Mali T628MP4 handled everything thrown at it with ease. So, gaming experience is smooth and there is no visible lag.
In the AnTuTu benchmark test, the Honor 6 Plus scored an impressive figure of 42223. While this is lower than other flagships like OnePlus One, Xiaomi Mi4 and Galaxy S5, the difference is very minimal, which means in day to day usage, the performance should be more or less the same on all the four devices.
Naturally with the kind of tech inside the Honor 6 Plus, 1080p video playback is extremely smooth. The phone responds well even when scrolling the video forwards or backwards. So, you can anytime rely on this device for watching Full HD movies. Honor 6 supports a number of network bands such as TD-LTE / FDD-LTE / WCDMA / GSM. It runs on Android 4.4.2 KitKat OS with Emotion 3.0 UI. But we’ll discuss more on the software in another post.
Now, we come to the most anticipated feature of the device, the dual 8MP rear camera setup!
Instead of increasing the camera sensor size, or the lens aperture, which would have in turn bulked up the camera component on the Honor 6 Plus, Huawei went with a dual camera setup. While this sounds a lot like the duo-camera on the HTC One M8, this particular setup does have some additional advantages. First of all, you have get the same depth of field effect on this device as the M8. This can be achieved, even after you have captured the image, thanks to the two cameras at the back along with the 3IE algorithm that it utilizes for these images. These two cameras work together to capture individual 8MP images of the same object and then the software stitches them together to form a 13MP end resolution picture.
The setup also helps focus extremely fast. In fact, Huawei claims that the rear camera can focus in just 0.1 seconds. The setup works like a human eye, which helps track down the exact location of the object in such a short time. This enables it to focus on the desired object so quickly. The above mentioned 3IE algorithm works together with the camera to eliminate dark areas as well as bring in more light into the picture. As a result, you’ll immediately notice a significant difference in the images captured with this device than other competing devices.
As you will see in the pictures below, the images taken from the Huawei Honor 6 Plus looks quite good. There are some issues with a few features of the device, such as the depth of field optimization which doesn’t allow a wide range aperture settings as promised. However, we are sure a few software patches will fix the issue.
The low light performance is particularly impressive, thanks to the two cameras at the back which capture in more light than a single sensor. Moreover, the setup allows the phone to get more details about the object even at night times which helps reduce noise in the images taken. The captured pictures turn out to be clear and the color reproduction is accurate too. In short, the dual camera setup at the back will definitely impress you.
CAMERA UICAMERA UI 2
Even the front camera is of 8MP, but it lacks the dual camera setup. However, it’s still great for selfies and video calls, owing to the 88 degrees wide angle lens fitted on it which captures a lot more area than traditional front cameras.
Here are some samples from the rear camera.
More pictures are given in the gallery.
With these tech specs, Huawei has made sure that the Honor 6 Plus lasts easily for more than a day. It comes with a large 3600 mAh battery which should be sufficient for everyday usage. In everyday terms, a few minutes of hours of calling and surfing, a few pictures once in a while as well as listening to music for a few more hours would not deplete the battery completely. So, it will last you an entire day with moderate usage. However, as of now, we don’t know the exact run time that the battery provides. But stay tuned as in the next few days, we’ll try to update you guys about the battery life.
Huawei Honor 6 Plus comes with a great design with an amazing build quality (refer our earlier article where it stops a bullet!), top-notch hardware, an amazing camera as well as a great battery. It looks like the company has finally covered everything that a buyer wants in a device.
You get all these features for a price that put other flagships like HTC One M8, Xperia Z3 and Samsung Galaxy S5 to shame. The Honor 6 Plus is up for pre-order starting today at an amazing price of 1999 Yuan ($323) for the 3G variant and the 2499 ($403) Yuan for the 4G variant. The device starts shipping from next week.
With the Huawei Honor 6 Plus now in the picture, which flagship would you buy?